A. D. Players to Present Houston Premiere of THE FIRST CHURCH OF TEXACO, Opening 2/15

Managing Director Ric Hodgin confirmed today that A. D. Players will present the Houston Premiere of the romantic comedy The First Church of Texaco by award winning writer and director Andrew Librizzi.

Originally written for the Desert Bloom Theatre in Dallas, founded by Librizzi, The First Church of Texaco has since been produced throughout the United States.

Stanton Presley is a CEO who mysteriously relocates his headquarters to an abandoned Texaco station in Blessing, Texas and hires local librarian Alice as his secretary. But he gets more than he bargained for in Alice, and his plans are hilariously upset when small town gossip and crossed telephone lines lead to his ordination as the "pastor" of a new church. This campy, fun-filled romantic comedy is all about losing a fortune, finding a treasure, and winning an Emmi on the highway of life.

"I love that this is a story of people who quit trying to keep up appearances and become who they are," said Director Jennifer Dean (Charley's Aunt, Leaving Iowa). "The play is funny, and I fell in love with the characters, but the play resonated with me on an even deeper level."

Librizzi will be present at A. D. Players Grace Theater for opening night, February 15th, and will participate the following night, February 16th in a talk back session with the audience, following the play.

Andrew Librizzi is an award winning playwright and screen writer based in Dallas, Texas. His new feature film Beyond the Farthest Star will be released for theaters later this year. In 1995, Mr. Librizzi found the Desert Bloom Theatre in Dallas where he wrote and directed a number of romantic comedies including The First Church of Texaco, The Boxer's Garden, and Peanut Butter and Tofu on Jewish Rye which have since been produced professionally throughout the United States and Canada. His first feature film Holding On won an international award at the Houston Worldfest Film Festival. Other Film and TV work includes directing the television pilot of Texas Tales and Legends starring Barry Corbin (Northern Exposure, One Tree Hill, and No Country for Old Men), and writing and directing the short film Still Born (nominated for 11 awards in the 168 Film Festival, and finalist at the Damah Awards and Seoul Film Festival. Additionally, Mr. Librizzi has received a number of industry awards for his work including five Tellys and two Communicator Awards.

The cast of The First Church of Texaco includes Ric Hodgin as Stanton Presley, Christy Watkins as Alice Mann, Blake Weir as Brad, and Bethany Eggleston (guest artist) as Emmi.

Tickets to The First Church of Texaco may be purchased online at www.adplayers.org, at the A. D. Players Box Office, 2710 W. Alabama, or by calling 713-526-2721. Ticket prices are: Previews: $15; Wednesday - Sunday: $32 - $41. Group, student, and senior discounts are available.

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